Biden alerts Xi Jinping to China’s ongoing assistance to Russia amid Ukraine war

During a phone chat with China’s leader Xi Jinping on Tuesday, US President Joe Biden warned him about his government’s continued backing for Russia despite the Ukraine conflict.

Biden and Xi spoke for the first time this week since meeting for a summit in California last November. According to media reports, a senior administration official told reporters during a background call that the meeting was a “check-in” as the two countries attempted to manage escalating global tensions.

Over an hour and 45 minutes, Biden and Xi discussed several hot-button issues, including growing US concerns over China’s trading alliance with Russia two years into the latter’s war in Ukraine, according to a White House transcript.

Biden alerts Xi Jinping to China's ongoing assistance to Russia amid Ukraine war

More than two years after invading Ukraine in February 2022, Russia has managed to keep its economy afloat by shifting much of its trade from the West to the East and South, particularly with China and India.

Despite isolating itself from the rest of the world, Russia nevertheless has an economic friend in China, whose continued backing has helped Russia rebuild its weapons sector at a critical point in the fight.

Russia has effectively avoided Western sanctions with the assistance of China since Beijing serves as an alternate outlet for Russia’s banned oil. According to a recent Reuters story, some Russian industries have experienced an economic boom since the war as a result of profitable trade partnerships with Chinese corporations that buy Russian energy supplies in exchange for machinery and automobiles.

Biden alerts Xi Jinping to China's ongoing assistance to Russia amid Ukraine war

According to a report released last month, Russia’s Central Bank is turning to the Chinese yuan for reserves and to dodge Western sanctions.

Russian President Vladimir Putin even mentioned Beijing shortly after his reelection last month. Xi congratulated Putin and issued a statement confirming the legality of the carefully orchestrated election.

According to media sources, Biden and Xi discussed numerous potential triggers in the two superpowers’ tense relationship on Tuesday, including Taiwan, China’s provocations in the South China Sea, and ongoing conflicts throughout the world, such as the war in Israel and Gaza.

The two had previously spoken on the phone in July 2022 and met later that year in Bali.

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